U.S. Sustainability Alliance | Skin & Leather Fact Sheet



Leather — a protective, versatile, durable, breathable material — is the best way of dealing with the high volume of hides and skins that have to be sustainably and affordably managed.

The volume of hides and skins collected as a by-product from the meat industry is significant.  The leather industry purchases these by-products, which otherwise would mostly go to waste, and transforms them into one of the most versatile and attractive materials on earth.

Environmental Stewardship: A commitment to continuous improvement

The U.S. meat industry generated 31.1 million cattle hides in 2016, along with 4.4 million pig skins and 2.3 million goat and sheepskins. The leather industry purchases these hides and skins – which otherwise would go to waste – and transforms them into leather.

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